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The University of Oxford is one of the world's leading centres for the study of Africa. In every Faculty and Division across the University there are active research programmes focused on the continent. The African Studies Centre, within the School of Interdisciplinary Area Studies, acts as a focal point for graduate level work and faculty research on Africa. Alongside the vibrant doctoral programmes, the MSc in African Studies, inaugurated in 2006, is already recognised as Europe's most prestigious and successful training programme in its field.

African Studies Centre Oxford University

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The University of Oxford is one of the world's leading centres for the study of Africa. In every Faculty and Division across the University there are active research programmes focused on the continent. The African Studies Centre, within the School of Interdisciplinary Area Studies, acts as a focal point for graduate level work and faculty research on Africa. Alongside the vibrant doctoral programmes, the MSc in African Studies, inaugurated in 2006, is already recognised as Europe's most prestigious and successful training programme in its field.

    Book Launch: Extralegal Groups in Post-Conflict Liberia

    Book Launch: Extralegal Groups in Post-Conflict Liberia

    In this seminar, Christine Cheng explores how states and extra-legal groups work together and analyzes how our definitions of what is legal affect our view of the state and governance.

    • 49 min
    The Elders know Nothing: the Inversion of Tradition in the New Mining Context

    The Elders know Nothing: the Inversion of Tradition in the New Mining Context

    Ramon Sarró and Marina P. Temudo deliver paper at 'Cultural Production in Africa's Extractive Communities' workshop. This is the fourth of five papers delivered at this workshop on 16 May 2019.

    ‘Cultural Production in Africa’s Extractive Communities’ is the sixth research seminar of the ERC project ‘Comparing the Copperbelt’ based at the University of Oxford. It focuses on the intersection between mining and cultural production in Central, Western and Southern Africa. Mining was one of the most important engines of transformation in Africa’s recent social and economic history. Industrial-scale mining – of gold, copper, tin, coal, oil, and diamonds – generated new towns and hurled people together from myriad cultural, linguistic and regional backgrounds. Thus, mining regions have also proved to be important venues of new forms of cultural production. Examples include DRCongo’s popular painting, Zambia’s psychedelic rock revolution in the 1970s, or Sotho migrant workers’ lifela song-poem genre. While certain forms of popular art have been the object of detailed study, e.g. in J.C. Mitchell’s 1956 ethnography of the Kalela dance, many of these studies have tended to be narrow in geographical focus.

    This seminar will attempt a more global view and will look at a variety of cultural forms across a variety of regions and time periods. It will integrate analysis of cultural production into regional histories that have more commonly been characterised in structural and material terms, exploring the ways in which processes of cultural, political and economic change found expression in everyday life. Questions to be addressed include: in what ways did new forms of popular art integrate various cultural influences to address social issues specific to the mining context? How does the
    21st century mining context, defined by plurality and competing global companies, impact cultural production? How do cultural forms produced in such contexts relate to and compare with those produced in other areas of the country? What can popular art tell us about the lived experiences of the societies that produced it?

    • 30 min
    Youth, insecurity and intimacy in the popular arts of the Niger Delta

    Youth, insecurity and intimacy in the popular arts of the Niger Delta

    David Pratten delivers paper at 'Cultural Production in Africa's Extractive Communities' workshop. This is the third of five papers delivered at this workshop on 16 May 2019.

    ‘Cultural Production in Africa’s Extractive Communities’ is the sixth research seminar of the ERC project ‘Comparing the Copperbelt’ based at the University of Oxford. It focuses on the intersection between mining and cultural production in Central, Western and Southern Africa. Mining was one of the most important engines of transformation in Africa’s recent social and economic history. Industrial-scale mining – of gold, copper, tin, coal, oil, and diamonds – generated new towns and hurled people together from myriad cultural, linguistic and regional backgrounds. Thus, mining regions have also proved to be important venues of new forms of cultural production. Examples include DRCongo’s popular painting, Zambia’s psychedelic rock revolution in the 1970s, or Sotho migrant workers’ lifela song-poem genre. While certain forms of popular art have been the object of detailed study, e.g. in J.C. Mitchell’s 1956 ethnography of the Kalela dance, many of these studies have tended to be narrow in geographical focus.

    This seminar will attempt a more global view and will look at a variety of cultural forms across a variety of regions and time periods. It will integrate analysis of cultural production into regional histories that have more commonly been characterised in structural and material terms, exploring the ways in which processes of cultural, political and economic change found expression in everyday life. Questions to be addressed include: in what ways did new forms of popular art integrate various cultural influences to address social issues specific to the mining context? How does the
    21st century mining context, defined by plurality and competing global companies, impact cultural production? How do cultural forms produced in such contexts relate to and compare with those produced in other areas of the country? What can popular art tell us about the lived experiences of the societies that produced it? Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales; http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/uk/

    • 29 min
    Artistic Movements: Music, Popular Painting and Cultural Exchanges on the central African Copperbelt

    Artistic Movements: Music, Popular Painting and Cultural Exchanges on the central African Copperbelt

    Enid Guene delivers paper at 'Cultural Production in Africa's Extractive Communities' workshop. This is the second of five papers delivered at this workshop on 16 May 2019.

    ‘Cultural Production in Africa’s Extractive Communities’ is the sixth research seminar of the ERC project ‘Comparing the Copperbelt’ based at the University of Oxford. It focuses on the intersection between mining and cultural production in Central, Western and Southern Africa. Mining was one of the most important engines of transformation in Africa’s recent social and economic history. Industrial-scale mining – of gold, copper, tin, coal, oil, and diamonds – generated new towns and hurled people together from myriad cultural, linguistic and regional backgrounds. Thus, mining regions have also proved to be important venues of new forms of cultural production. Examples include DRCongo’s popular painting, Zambia’s psychedelic rock revolution in the 1970s, or Sotho migrant workers’ lifela song-poem genre. While certain forms of popular art have been the object of detailed study, e.g. in J.C. Mitchell’s 1956 ethnography of the Kalela dance, many of these studies have tended to be narrow in geographical focus.

    This seminar will attempt a more global view and will look at a variety of cultural forms across a variety of regions and time periods. It will integrate analysis of cultural production into regional histories that have more commonly been characterised in structural and material terms, exploring the ways in which processes of cultural, political and economic change found expression in everyday life. Questions to be addressed include: in what ways did new forms of popular art integrate various cultural influences to address social issues specific to the mining context? How does the
    21st century mining context, defined by plurality and competing global companies, impact cultural production? How do cultural forms produced in such contexts relate to and compare with those produced in other areas of the country? What can popular art tell us about the lived experiences of the societies that produced it? Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales; http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/uk/

    • 28 min
    Mobutist Modernism: Art Education, State Sponsorship and the Visual Arts in Zaire

    Mobutist Modernism: Art Education, State Sponsorship and the Visual Arts in Zaire

    Sarah Van Beurden delivers paper at 'Cultural Production in Africa's Extractive Communities' workshop. This is the first of five papers delivered at this workshop on 16 May 2019.

    ‘Cultural Production in Africa’s Extractive Communities’ is the sixth research seminar of the ERC project ‘Comparing the Copperbelt’ based at the University of Oxford. It focuses on the intersection between mining and cultural production in Central, Western and Southern Africa. Mining was one of the most important engines of transformation in Africa’s recent social and economic history. Industrial-scale mining – of gold, copper, tin, coal, oil, and diamonds – generated new towns and hurled people together from myriad cultural, linguistic and regional backgrounds. Thus, mining regions have also proved to be important venues of new forms of cultural production. Examples include DRCongo’s popular painting, Zambia’s psychedelic rock revolution in the 1970s, or Sotho migrant workers’ lifela song-poem genre. While certain forms of popular art have been the object of detailed study, e.g. in J.C. Mitchell’s 1956 ethnography of the Kalela dance, many of these studies have tended to be narrow in geographical focus.

    This seminar will attempt a more global view and will look at a variety of cultural forms across a variety of regions and time periods. It will integrate analysis of cultural production into regional histories that have more commonly been characterised in structural and material terms, exploring the ways in which processes of cultural, political and economic change found expression in everyday life. Questions to be addressed include: in what ways did new forms of popular art integrate various cultural influences to address social issues specific to the mining context? How does the
    21st century mining context, defined by plurality and competing global companies, impact cultural production? How do cultural forms produced in such contexts relate to and compare with those produced in other areas of the country? What can popular art tell us about the lived experiences of the societies that produced it?

    • 35 min
    Book Launch: State and Society in Nigeria

    Book Launch: State and Society in Nigeria

    Portia Roelofs and Gavin Williams discuss in this podcast Gavin's influential book, State and Society in Nigeria. Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales; http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/uk/

    • 34 min

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